On a day when the weather was near perfect in Southampton, Bermuda, plenty of players took advantage.
The first round of the 2023 Butterfield Bermuda Championship has come and gone, and there were no shortage of players to take advantage of favorable scoring conditions Thursday at Port Royal Golf Club. And with everything on the line on the island in the North Atlantic Ocean, it shouldn’t be a surprise to see the leaderboard as packed as it is at the top.
In addition to the low scores, there was a PGA Tour record broken in the first round.
The first round was suspended due to darkness at 4:33 p.m. ET.
Here’s everything you need to know from the first round of the Butterfield Bermuda Championship.
Alex Noren fires career-low round
It’s hard to find any issues with how Alex Noren played Thursday morning.
Eleven birdies, one bogey and six pars later, Noren cruised to a 10-under 61 opening round score, which set a new career-low round on the PGA Tour.
Noren owns a two-shot lead over a big pack at 8 under, including Vince Whaley and Robert Garrigus.
Adam Long breaks 31-year-old PGA Tour record
Adam Long set a new PGA Tour record on Thursday morning in the opening round.
Long hit his 60th straight fairway when he found the short grass on his second hole, a par-5, after going 56-for-56 last week at the World Wide Technology Championship, breaking Brian Claar’s record of 59 straight fairways hit, set in 1992. His streak went back to his final two holes at the Shriners Children’s Open.
He did finally miss a fairway on his back nine, hitting 12 of 14 on the day, but the record is now his at 69 straight fairways.
Checking in on the 15-year-old
Most 15-year-olds went to school on Thursday before going home and doing homework or playing video games with friends.
Not Oliver Betschart.
The Bermuda native qualified for the tournament and is the youngest person to tee it up on the PGA Tour since 2014.
In the opening round, he was 1 over through 15 holes when the horn blew to conclude play for the day. In his round, he has three birdies, two bogeys and a double. He is on the par-5 seventh hole when play resumes.
Strong start for U.S. Amateur champ
The final pairing off the first tee during Thursday’s opening round featured a glimpse at the game’s future.
First is Sam Bennett, the recent Texas A&M grad who won the 2022 U.S. Amateur. Then there’s Fred Biondi, the 2023 NCAA individual champion from Florida who turned professional this summer. Then there’s Nick Dunlap, the best amateur in golf this summer who won the 2023 U.S. Amateur at Cherry Hills Country Club outside of Denver.
And for Dunlap, a sophomore at Alabama, he got off to a hot start.
Dunlap was on his 17th hole when the horn went off. He was 3 under through 16. The 17th, a par 5, is playing as the easiest hole in the first round.
With the Butterfield Bermuda Championship being the penultimate event on the schedule, there are plenty of players looking to secure their cards for next year.
After the first round, Austin Smotherman has moved inside the FedEx Cup top 125. He entered the week at 130 and is projected at 124 after 18 holes of play. Smotherman shot 7-under 64 on Thursday.
Matti Schmid entered at 148 and also shot 7 under, and he is projected at 132. Both players sit T-6.
Ryan Moore shot 6 under and entered the week at 140. He’s projected at 133.